Monday, January 28, 2013

Star Money

Preparing to tell the Grimm Tale, Star Money

Painting Yellow

The wee ones finger painted, Star Money fell right into their baskets.

The big girls finger painted Star Money

The story of Star Money, brings a sense of gratitude and selfless to the listener. This small girl is left to fend for herself in the great world. With a pious heart and generous spirit, she proceeds to give all she has to offer, a piece of bread, a cap, a coat, her dress and finally, her slip. Just as she gives away her final garment, leaving herself alone and naked in the wood, golden coins begin to fall from the sky.
As she glances down, she sees she is clothed in the finest linen. She catches the coins and lives in harmony for the rest of her days. Of course, this tale is not about being selfish for monetary gain, it is swimming in selflessness and being rewarded without expectation. I know that there is controversy regarding The Fairy Tale, but I believe it is unfounded. When taken literally, there may be concern. However, a Fairy Tale lives in the spirit. Fairy Tales hold the archetypes of our human capacity. When children hear a Fairy Tale, they are experiencing the enormous capacity of the human spirit to triumph through adversity.

On Painting One Color

Painting begins with color, each color carries with it it's own qualities. When children paint only one color at a time, they are able to experience these qualities out of their own forces. Really painting yellow, watching how it moves, where it shines out, where it dissipates into light, gives the painter a chance to converse with the color in purity. It also allows a little one to walk away with a painting that is peaceful and harmonious. Eventually, we will paint all of the primary colors individually, then move onto colors "meeting" each other on the same page. This allows the child to see the colors working together. Without these first steps, it is easy to freely mix colors until they are muddy and brown. Although this can be fun, the real hope in art instruction and experience is develop a conversation between the artist and color.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Painting Yellow

Watercolor Class

Even as the chilly January temperatures keep the world frosty, the sun has been peeking out nearly everyday! During this week's painting class we gathered around the hearth and heard the story of "The Sun Prince." He stole away the only daughter of a poor farmer. Her mother cried with grief everyday. When the brothers were old enough to know of their mother's sorrows, each went in turn to bring their sister home. Only the youngest was brave enough to all that was asked of him after his arrival at the Sun Prince's shining dwelling. And so his sister was allowed to visit her grieving mother and provide comfort to her.

We painted Yellow, in all of it's shining glory. No words, just watching Yellow shine and wane and disappear into light. It was a cold day, but we experienced the warmth of Yellow, and bright and true.

Friday, January 11, 2013

The Frog Prince

Wool Roving, Castille Soap, Warm Water and Magic Bells

The sun was shining brightly here in Portland today! It was the perfect day for felting. After hearing the story of The Frog Prince, and the fate of the princess' Golden Ball, we moved over to the work table. With warm water and a squirt of Dr. Bronner's Rose soap, we were ready to roll. Starting with a small bell and some wool roving, we worked the wool and added more wool roving until we had The Princess' Golden Ball! A great way to spend the day.

The Princess' Golden Ball

And if you are interested, the fees at Alberta Art Classes are now Pay What You Can. Please don't let lack of funds keep you or your little one from experiencing an Artful Life! Sign-up today at